Staring its life in the 1940’s vinyl was thought to be obsolete, but as of 2017 vinyl record sales topped digital media and CD sales in the UK. Records are coming back to life for Gen X and Y, but with this fierce come back come old knowledge that needs to be taught once again. Caring for, cleaning, and storing vinyl is no longer common knowledge in the world, therefore we hope this little blurb helps you successfully maintain your ever growing record collection.
Be sure to store your records vertically and away from any extreme temperatures or humidity changes. This will prevent warping and melting. Dust and dirt are also harmful to records. We advise that you keep your vinyl in an inner sleeve inside of the record cover. For further protection you can also put the cover inside a plastic outer sleeve. These precautions help keep your record looking shiny, and are a preemptive way for you to spend less money on record cleaning supplies.
A record is handled similar to a CD. Try not to touch any part of the record that contains information, the grooves. This helps keep dust, oils, and other particles off your vinyl. If you do find some dust use a carbon fiber brush to remove it. We recommend doing this before and after playing your record to ensure the maximum amount of lasting quality.
Cleaning your records occasionally will help keep them playable for almost ever. Having dirt and dust damages your stylus over time (which is much more expensive than some cleaning solution).
We recommend beginning the cleaning process with a carbon fiber brush; failure to do so could cause dust to get trapped in the grooves of your vinyl. We use a spin record washer that works like a bath for vinyl. It takes some time, especially if your collection is as big as ours, but all you have to do is gently spin the record through cleaning solution while the built in bush cleans. Then you wipe the record following the grooves with certain no thread towels. It is important not to place a wet record back into its sleeve.
Another, more time consuming, way would be to use a spray bottle and the previously mentions no thread towel.
It is important to keep your turntable to good condition, having a good needle, and stylus. Poor turntable conditions can damage records leaving scratches and scuffs. Modern turntable owners do not need to worry about all the little idiosyncrasies because the newer record players come already set up to play, but if you bought a vintage turntable from a random pawn shop you are going to want to make sure the stylus is not damaged.